This post has developed a lovely communal life of its own – it’s where I fill you in on the behind the scenes of Mamamia and you discuss anything at all that’s on your mind or “On My Mind – OMM” (in case you’re wondering what that means in some of the comments).
This week has been an intense one on the site – from the sublime to the ridiculous. I don’t particularly want to move the discussions about a few issues that are already going on here and here over to this post but we’ve all really felt the energy course through the site this week.
Not in a bad way at all. In an exciting, relevant, passionate way. I often think MM is at its best when it’s a bit raw and feisty without being abusive. I don’t feel either of those posts have deteriorated into nastiness and we’ve deleted very very few comments. Hardly any in fact.
There’s another post you may not have caught before it flew off the homepage (as we publish more content, it’s live for a shorter and shorter amount of time there which is a little bit sad. We’re trying to rectify that by tweeting and Facebooking content that’s still relevant but hidden.)
Anyway, it’s our regular ‘best of the street style blogs’ where Lucy surfs around the world for some shots of regular people wearing interesting outfits. Quite a few people were grumpy with this week’s gallery, noting that some of the looks were too wintery and there weren’t enough larger women portrayed in the mix.
Here is this week’s street style gallery:
I left the following comment in response:
Hello everyone, I’ve taken a closer look at the gallery in the light of some of your comments.
Have to say, it’s FREEZING where I am (Sydney! in December!) so I wasn’t so bothered by some of the winterish outfits.
It’s interesting to read what you’ve described as your frustrations with this post on an on-going basis. I’ve always been of the mind that you can be smart, engaged, interested in news and also fond of looking at a nice frock (or jeans or shoe or bag or….) so we do run celeb fashion galleries on MM and they’re popular.
But since we try not to run shots of celebrities that are taken intrusively (ie: off duty, with their kids, going about their private business etc), the shots tend to be very homogenised. All red carpet. Mostly ‘gowns’. No doubt fully styled up with a coterie of professionals behind the scenes.
Lovey to look at but pretty samey.
We envisioned this ‘street style’ post as being an bit of an antidote to that. It’s not meant to be taken literally – as in, you should wear this. More of a peep into what real people are wearing in their real lives.
Admittedly they are stylish people but they don’t earn a living from the way they look (like celebs and models).
I believe the bodies in this gallery – and the ages and nationalities – ARE diverse! Certainly a million times more diverse than magazines or red carpets.
Please don’t go through counting the images and estimating what size the women are and what proportion etc etc.
Well, you can, but we’ll always fail by that measure. We try really really hard to look for shots that portray as much diversity as possible. This is not easy but it’s important. We must do it and we do.
But since we don’t create these images ourselves, we are limited by what’s already out there. This sounds a bit cop-out-y but we currently don’t have the resources to find and shoot new images.
As for linking back to blogs – much to our frustration – our tech people are consumed with work and that has taken a number. So it won’t happen overnight but it will happen.
Perhaps it’s time to rest the street style gallery. I’ve found, oddly enough, all through my career that when you try to do something moving towards diversity, it tends to attract far more criticism than when you just follow the status quo.
By that I mean that on our galleries where every celeb is a size 8 (which is frustrating but again, we don’t control the size of celebrities and the culture of Hollywood – wish we did!), there is rarely any mention of it. But in a gallery that tries to be diverse, there are complaints (always) that it’s not diverse ENOUGH.
I understand and I share your frustration about diversity.
But I guess what I’m saying is we’re trying and we will continue to try harder.
You can check out the gallery in question here and we’d be keen to hear your thoughts – either on that post or this one.
After reading about the brilliant and inspiring Oxfam gift ideas in this post (they’re not just for Christmas – they work for any occasion) I bumped into a stall in my local Westfield and stocked up on pre-natal-classes, goats, chickens, women’s shelter emergency kits and a bunch of other ‘presents’ that really do embody the gift of giving…..
VALUES & WISDOM
I did receive a beautiful email this week from a woman called Margaret Summerhays which I wanted to share because it really touched me and made me think: